How to Save Over $3K in One Year For Travel

piggybanktravelTrying to save up for that grand vacation that you’ve always dreamed of, but you just can’t seem to find any spare cash? Everyone loves to travel, but for many people, a lack of sufficient funds keeps them from exploring new places. If you’re one of these people, never fear! You can stop day dreaming, and make it happen.

Here is a list of 10 easy ways to cut back on everyday expenditures so that you can go on the vacations of your dreams.

1. Start your savings by lower your utility bills at home. You will be surprised how much you can save just by turning off the lights in each room as you leave, or turning off the air-conditioning and opening up your windows. Change your air filters so the unit works efficiently.  Unplug items when they are not in use including computers, microwaves and toaster ovens. Standby power can amount to as much as 10% of your monthly bill.  Use energy efficient light bulbs.  Take shorter showers.  You should easily be able to save $25 per month by implementing these changes.  Put the money that you would normally have paid  for the electric bills aside (around $300 for the year,) for your new travel fund.

2. Cut out unnecessary channels on your cable television package. You pay a huge premium for sports and movie channels that may not be worth having. Many of the same things can be found on your computer for free. Changing from a premium to basic cable package can easily save you $75 per month.  That’s $900 more into your travel fund.

3. Unless you really love going to the gym, memberships can be quite costly, and many exercises do not require the use of an indoor facility or equipment. Yoga, running, bike riding, aerobics, dance and more can easily be done in the comfort of your home, in a park or on the beach.  Average gym memberships run $40 per month – you’ve got another $480 you can save up.

4. Use less money for gas. Car pool when you can.  Make to do lists and plan your trips so that you run your errands all in one day, versus going to the grocery store every few days because you forgot something.  If you can stand the heat, don’t use the AC constantly in your car.  Park in the shade when you can to avoid the car from heating up. Walk or ride a bike to places that are within a close proximity to you. This is good, not only for increasing your travel savings, but for your health as well.  You should easily be able to save at least $25 per month ($300 annually) in gas.

5. Save on your grocery shopping by utilizing coupons, sales and local markets that will discount your weekly food costs. If you normally budget $100 per week on food, try to reduce this by $10 dollars and put the excess money away for your next trip. That’s $480 in one year.

6. If you’ve got some expensive bad habits, like smoking or drinking in excess, minimize the amount of time your partaking in these activities so that the money that is so quickly wasted away can be saved for a more exciting adventure. When you do go out, look for happy hour specials. Remember alcohol is marked up around 40%, so buy your own bottle of wine and have it at home.  Since these expenses do not apply to everyone, we will not factor them into the travel budget.

7. Instead of shopping for new clothes each season, try to recycle your clothes to fit the following season. Jeans can be cut into shorts; sweaters and long sleeved shirts can be cut into tanks. It’s easy and fun to be creative with fashion. Learn to utilize what you have. Shop seasonally. Keep an eye out for stores clearing their racks of inventory in anticipation for the next season. Also consider outlet stores.  Since most women are shoppers and men tpyically are not, we are going to be conservative and say that you can save $300 off your shopping budget each year.

8. In the evening, rent a movie online. Cinemas are expensive these days – easily $30 – $40 just to get into the movies not to mention the concession stand, so keep the money that you would be spending on popcorn, drinks and a movie and stay in for the night. You can rent Redbox movies instead for $1 or Netflix for $10 per month. We won’t factor any savings in this category, but you know if it applies to you.

9. Stop dining out at restaurants. It’s much more economical to eat in. Try out some new recipes and enjoy the dining in the comfort of your own home. Keep at an eye out for dining deals on sites like Groupon or Restaurant.com.   Bring your lunch to work. Also, avoid buying overpriced coffee from places, like Starbucks. You’ll be surprised how much you can save!  On a very conservative forecast, let’s say you would save just $20 per week in this category weekly, by just bringing your lunch with you daily – that’s $1,040 per year.  For those of you who eat lunch out every day, the savings could easily be over the $1,500 mark.

10. Finally, make a few extra bucks by selling off all your clutter items on eBay or by having a yard sale. As the old saying goes, “one man’s trash is another man’s treasure.”  You never know what people will buy. You won’t miss having the mess, while your vacationing in the Caribbean, Europe or wherever you decide to go.

So there you have it – at least $3,500 for a vacation accomplished in just one year by just being a little more mindful about your expenses.  If you are willing to make more significant lifestyle changes in order to pursue your passion for travel, like moving back home temporarily, you could easily save more than double that amount.

Trust us – it will be worth it.  Travel can change your life.

 

What to See and Do in Bangkok, Thailand

Bangkok is Thailand’s economic center and offers a blend of both old and new.  It is an expression of Thai respect for tradition coupled with their vibrant involvement with modern progress.  The modern façade of the city is imposing, but its dynamic past holds its own amongst the skyscrapers that line the river, reaching further and further toward the heavens. Bangkok is a city electric with excitement, always in motion and pressing the visitor to take it all in. We invite you to do just that – explore imperial Bangkok and discover why the Thais call it the “City of Angels”.

Favorite Activities in Bangkok

bangkok must see sightseeingBangkok City & Temples
Bangkok has approximately 400 Buddhist temples.  Wat Traimit (the Temple of the Golden Buddha), this temple is known for its famous Golden Buddha. Thought to have been constructed during the Sukhothai period and at three meters high and weighing five and a half tons, the Golden Buddha, officially titled Phra Phuttha Maha Suwan Patimakon, is the world’s largest solid gold statue.

Continue on to look around Wat Pho, built by King Rama I nearly 200 years ago and housing the gigantic Reclining Buddha or Phra Buddhasaiyas. This distinctive image is 150 ft long and almost 50ft high and entirely covered in gold leaf. The soles of the feet are intricately inlaid with 108 auspicious signs of the Buddha. Wat Pho is also regarded as the first center of public education and the birthplace of traditional Thai massage, and as such is sometimes referred to as “Thailand’s First University”.

Visit Wat Benchamabopit. This magnificent monastery was built with white Italian marble.

Go on to see The Emerald Buddha Temple (Wat Phra Kaeo). Bangkok’s most important and sacred wat. Built at the end of the 18th century by King Rama I, this splendid example of Thai aesthetics and religious architecture houses the Emerald Buddha, Thailand’s most venerated image. So small and distant that it can hardly be seen, the jade image symbolizes the independence, strength and good fortune of the country. The Interior walls are painted with superb frescoes, while murals between the window frames depict Jataka scenes from the life of Buddha.

Klong Cruise & Grand Palace 
The network of klongs (canals) highlights the traditional Thai way of life that once gave Bangkok the title of “The Venice of the East”, on the mighty Chao Phraya River (the River of the Kings).  Enjoy a morning boat ride along the Chao Phraya River. Stop at the Temple of Dawn, ‘Wat Arun,’ which is one of the city’s iconic landmarks and visit the Royal Palace to see Dusit Hall abd holy Wat Phra Kaew to gaze at the Jade Budha.  The Grand Palace is one of the most beautiful examples of an ancient Siamese court, which incorporates several palaces and halls used for different occasions. Bangkok’s former royal palace is an intriguing blend of Italian Renaissance architecture and classical Thai roofing. It was begun in 1782 by King Rama I and improved upon by subsequent rulers. See the Throne Hall, the Coronation Hall, the Reception Palace and the Funeral Palace.

thailandbangkokDamnoen Saduak Floating Market55845233Damnern Saduak Floating Markets 
The River and ‘klong’ markets give a realistic glance of how daily life must have been in earlier times. The floating markets are where the sellers, their boats laden with a wide variety of tropical fruits, flowers and vegetables, come to barter their products.  Visit the Bangkok Flower Market or Pak Klong Talad as it is known locally. This market is Bangkok’s answer to London’s Covent Garden, a lively, colorful place presenting an excellent opportunity for seeing the rich variety of Thailand’s fresh produce. You can wander through the many stalls to see orchids of every color and variety available by the thousands.

Chatuchak Weekend Market 
Since 1982, Chatuchak market has been the most popular of markets in Bangkok. This famous weekend shopping haven is the biggest, best stocked and probably the most frequented of markets with the best bargains to be found anywhere in the city.

Thai Dinner and Dances at Sala Rim Nan 
The Thai dinner and dance shows are a visual and palatable delight which occur at Sala Rim Nam, a richly decorated Thai pavilion on the river. Originating from Northern Thailand, the restaurant is also the setting for one of the kingdom’s cultural experiences – classical Thai dancing.

Thailand tours start at just a little over $100 per day including a tour guide, transportation, first class hotels, some sightseeing and meals.

 

Earth Day and Sustainable Travel

Earth Day and Sustainable Travel

Earth Day is a celebration of the earth and a reminder of the importance of taking care of her and is celebrated  this year on April 22, 2014. Many cities have celebrations and events to mark this special day. However, … Read Story

India’s Artistic, Spiritual and Wild Side

India’s Artistic, Spiritual and Wild Side

India enchants with exotic appeal that permeates the country, from the snowy peaks of the Himalayas to the tropical forested peninsula. The world’s seventh largest country in size and second in population with just over one billion residents, this Asia … Read Story

Tokyo Insider Experiences

Tokyo Insider Experiences

Tokyo, Japan is a city of paradoxes, with imperial majesty set against the exciting pace of cutting-edge trends in fashion, art, technology and food. You’ll find high-rises that hide the city’s best sushi bars near cobblestone streets that seem straight … Read Story

Family Vacations Close to Home

Family Vacations Close to Home

You needn’t travel far for incredible adventures that the whole family can enjoy right here in North America. Whether you have little ones, teens or a multi-generational mix, this diverse continent has something for everyone, from stunning natural landscapes and … Read Story

Little-Known Caribbean Vacation Destinations

Little-Known Caribbean Vacation Destinations

The Caribbean islands are a popular vacation destination, but how many of them do you really know about? There are almost 30 nations and over 7,000 islands in the Caribbean, yet there are a small handful, like St. Martin, Aruba, … Read Story

Total Lunar Eclipse #BloodMoon

Total Lunar Eclipse #BloodMoon

On April 15th a phenomenon that usually only happens several times a year is occurring. A total lunar eclipse will be visible in most of North America. If you are planning to watch this spectacular view of the moon there … Read Story

360 Degrees of Switzerland

360 Degrees of Switzerland

With a unique location in the heart of Europe, this pristine country, famed for its unwavering neutrality, instills you with peace at first glance. But you’ll find Switzerland’s allure extends far beyond natural panorama, offering sights sure to amuse whether … Read Story

10 Things to Do in Fiji

10 Things to Do in Fiji

In Fiji, each new day brings with it a wide range of unique and fascinating things to see, do and experience. From wondrous beauty to captivating cultural experiences, sightseeing in Fiji will never fail to take your breath away. Picnic … Read Story

Page 1 of 16712345...102030...Last »